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Old 06-21-2006, 05:27 PM   Topic Starter
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The Republican-controlled Senate refused Wednesday to raise the minimum wage

If we raise the minimum wage are we only increasing the prevailing wage of the illegal immigrants?

Sounds very democratic to me.

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Republican-controlled Senate refused Wednesday to raise the minimum wage, rejecting an election-year proposal from Democrats for the first increase in nearly a decade.


The vote was 52-46, eight short of the 60 needed.


"I don't think the Republicans get it," said Sen. Edward M. Kennedy,
D-Massachusetts, who backed a proposal for a three-step increase in the current wage floor to $7.25 an hour. The federal minimum wage has been fixed at $5.15 an hour since 1997.


Republican critics said the minimum wage was a job killer, not the boon to low-wage workers portrayed by Democrats.


"This is a classic debate between two different philosophies. One
philosophy believes in the marketplace, competition and entrepreneurship, and the second is a philosophy that says government knows best," said Sen. Johnny Isakson, R-Georgia. He said France and Germany have high minimum wages but also high unemployment.


But Kennedy and other advocates of an increase said minimum wage workers have been without a raise since 1997.


Underscoring the political context of the debate, he said if Democrats win the Senate this November, a minimum wage increase will be one of the first pieces of legislation to be considered.
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